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Monday,November 30,2020 01:19 AM

Crested Crane faces extinction

By Vision Reporter

Added 11th May 2005 03:00 AM

THE Crested Crane is on the way to extinction if measures are not taken to save its habitats, a survey under the “Save the Crane” project has revealed.

THE Crested Crane is on the way to extinction if measures are not taken to save its habitats, a survey under the “Save the Crane” project has revealed.

By Gerald Tenywa

THE Crested Crane is on the way to extinction if measures are not taken to save its habitats, a survey under the “Save the Crane” project has revealed.

William Olupot of the Wildlife Conservation Society (WCS) yesterday said only 21 districts still had the national bird out of the 35 where they were sighted about five years ago.

But the nests for the Cranes were sighted in only 13 out of the 21 districts, an indicator that the breeding grounds for the Cranes are declining thus affecting the birds’ population.

The cranes make nests in wetlands and breed between October and March.

The assistant commissioner in charge of wetlands, Paul Mafabi, said the seasonal wetlands were under threat because of conversion for cultivation of crops and destruction by wild bush fires.

“They tend to be particular with the kind of swamp where they breed and will always come back to the same place,” said Mafabi.

Olupot said this was part of a report being compiled on the countrywide survey in which school children assisted by their parents counted crested cranes and their nests.

The project spearheaded by the WcS attracted more than 50 entries. Other partners in the project were The New Vision, Wildlife Clubs of Uganda and Nature Uganda.

Olupot said this was the first phase of the project and that a team of experts on birds would move to the habitats to verify the reports on the Cranes during the last phase.

He was speaking ahead of a draw which will take place soon to select winners who will be awarded with T-shirts. The five winning entries would attend a football match involving the national soccer team, the Uganda Cranes.

He said the “Save the Crane” project was to create awareness among school children and increase appreciation of the wise use of wetlands.

Achilles Byaruhanga of Nature Uganda said they were also working with the Crane foundation based in the US to protect the Crane habitats.

Crested Crane faces extinction

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